Live from sunny São Paulo, Brazil, Elder Steven Brent Clark here ready to tell you folks at home that everything is absolutely amazing and beautiful here in the world famous Brazil São Paulo East mission. Haha! What a great week it was! We had an amazing training with our mission president this week about planning. He said that when we plan, we show the Lord that we are ready to receive revelation in the work we do. If we don´t plan, we don´t deserve the confidence of the Lord in our daily work. How is it that He can trust us with His precious children´s lives if we, His missionaries, don´t even know how to run our own?! This is serious stuff and I never really looked at planning in such a way. He also gave us an example of the confidence that we need to have. We have the Holy Priesthood of God, but we don´t know how to use it yet. We need to be confident in EVERYTHING we do. When we set a goal, we need to already believe that we will accomplish it. This isn´t arrogance... it´s confidence that you have in yourself because the Lord has already given you the power and ability to do such a thing (1 Nephi 3:7). President Moreira, when he was 19 years-old, told his girlfriend (now his wife) that she could date whoever she wanted while he was on his mission... but he would be the one that would marry her when he got home. I am trying to gain this type of confidence every day.
So this weekend we baptized two of God´s awesome children. One of them is Dora. Dora is an older lady who had a stroke six years ago which left her right side of her body paralyzed. She has been abandoned by her family and only her neighbors visit her now, and us. When we took her to Church for the first time last week, she told us that she LOVED the Church! She had always thought it was only for the super rich people, but she saw that it´s for everyone and wanted to be baptized! She needed two people to baptize her, but it was one of the most beautiful things I´ve ever seen as a missionary so far. To see this old woman, depressed, without friends and family, change into such a lively and happy person after the baptism. Almost ALL of the members stayed to watch and I was extremely convinced that Dora would come to be a very special member of the Church.
The other woman that was baptized is the mom of the three young men we baptized last week. She had stopped drinking and showed a lot of interest in the Church this week. When we passed by her house to pick her up on Sunday, she wasn´t there. We got really confused and upset, thinking that another person had ran away from the baptism. When we got back to the Church, they were already there, sitting on the bench waiting for class to start. They had all come on their bikes! I was extremely relieved. Her oldest son will be baptized this next Sunday! He is quite large, so it will be a challenge lifting him up out of the water, but I am sure that it will be no problem. I will just have to do a lot more push-ups this week to preare! haha
That was basically all that happened here. I am about ready for another adventure here pretty soon. Oh! I just got back from playing basketball and soccer with a few members! I am no good at either sport now... I may have to stay out here a little longer to improve my game ;) I love you all! I have the best family and friends in the world! I hope you all have an amazing week!